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Cover image for How I made my first Full Stack App and Got a Certification from Harvard University and how you can too.

How I made my first Full Stack App and Got a Certification from Harvard University and how you can too.

adityapandey profile image Aditya Pandey ・1 min read

Hey DEV community members,

A few weeks ago, I completed my first ever Full stack app using:

HTML( Jinja actually)
CSS
JAVASCRIPT
Flask (Python Framework)
PostgreSQL.
Heroku

It is an online book management system similar to Goodreads.

You can add books to you shelf as
Read , To read and In progress.

Check it out live here:

https://startreading.herokuapp.com/

I submitted this project as part of Cs50 course taught by David Malan by Harvard University and earned the Certification.

Alt Text

Link to the Course on CS50's website:

https://cs50.harvard.edu/summer/2020/

Link to the course on Edx Website :

https://www.edx.org/course/cs50s-introduction-to-computer-science#.VNYLwvnF_0c

The project is hosted at Heroku and Database I used was from this very cool Website Elephant SQL.

Would love your reviews and feedback on this one.

If you have any specific query regarding this project, CS50 course or anything else, feel free to reach out to me through Twitter Or Connect to me on LinkedIn
You can also check out my Github .

Thank you, and again, feel free to reach out. 😊😇

Posted on by:

adityapandey profile

Aditya Pandey

@adityapandey

A business and economics student with love for science, technology and coding. 😎

Discussion

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I'm not sure if you're aware of this but certificates like these don't really matter one bit. People tend to glorify these certificates for some reason, even I used to but after getting a shitload of them, I realized it's not the certificate that matters, it's your ORIGINAL projects ( not the ones from the course ). It's good and all but what you've built here is actually a part of the course and falsely glorifying it is bottom-feeding. No offense.

 

Hey, I am quite aware that these certificates do not matter and it's the projects that we do. And I didn't even do the course for the certificate (i am a business student actually, do this for just fun😅), it was the learning that I gained and for this hobby of mine.

But, it's human nature to feel good about these certificates when you have been working on course for 2-3 months.
And, what I have built wasn't actually part of the course, students were free to work on project of their choice and since I love books, I chose this project.

I am not sure if you have checked out the course, but it is one of the best to learn computer science,
and the problem sets of the course make you really work hard if you do them sincerely of course.
If I have to glorify anything, it would be this amazing course that is available for free helping many like me who wish to learn to code from quality sources.

Anyways, thank you for your comment, it will be quite helpful for a beginner reading the post who might do these courses just for the sake of the certificate. :)

 

Yeah I've actually done CS50x : AP Principles for AP Credit. Also, thanks a lot for not taking my comment the wrong way and actually getting the gist of what I was trying to say. And yes, I'm aware that the last project is upto the student, I didn't know at the time that you were a business student doing it for fun so felt like the project wasn't as good for a good developer but since you're a business student, I think it's a good start. But just try reading up more on official documentations and just trying things out yourself instead of courses. Courses have a laid out curriculum which renders our own sense of aptitude null in the regard of making decisions for ourselves and learning solely ourselves. I think the best way is to figure out everything yourself since you learn 10x than the average person along the way. You make the curriculum yourself, you learn the basic concepts and then just throw yourself at the curriculum YOU made. Best way to learn and build great products.

There wasn't anything in your comment to be taken in the wrong way.
I understood that you had the best of intentions. You just presumed a few things, and that's totally fine.

About your views on courses, this is the only video course I have ever done, and that was purely because of content and the teaching style of amazing David Malan.
And, your bit about making a curriculum for yourself, it might be great for an intermediate or seasoned developer, but a newbie just entering this field or someone from non-tech background might get overwhelmed with the amount of stuff out there to learn.

So, it's best for them to follow a path of sites like freecodecamp.org (which I use to learn) or this CS50 course. They can ask for help from other senior people as well ( that's where sites like dev.to come into place, kudos to them).

And, about the CS50 AP, haven't received good reviews about it from some of my friends who have taken it. XD. No offense.
CS50x(Harvard) is more practical as compared to CS50AP because it composes less theoretical and gives focus on more practical stuff with different programming languages. It gives a really solid foundation.

Again, totally agree with you about the best way to learn is to build stuff. This is reason why I recommend freecodecamp.org and CS50 many newbies.

So, message to beginners is always, build, build, and build. But, yes, a structure is really important when you are just starting out. :)

@Arth Tyagi Again, very silly, some people learn best when self-directed, school works for others. There's no right way to learn, only what is best for you. Never slap down a student because their work isn't up to some imaginary quality standard.

Very fair point.
What I meant was that beginners need a structure or roadmap when starting out or they might fall in the tutorial hell (randomly watching youtube videos and not building stuff).
It's always better to reach out to people senior to you in the field and following a structure because you might end up losing the motivation if you go on to make your own curriculum and randomly watch tutorials.

100% agree with you. :)

Sorry, I was trying to reply to the post above yours, edited to make that more clear!

@aditya Pandey, I had to do the CS AP to get AP credits, it wasn't exactly a pleasant experience. The course is average to put it in simple words.

 

I don't understand this point of view at all. You gain knowledge learning the certificate, and then you get something to show you learned. Many, like this one, are free. What is false about glorifying a project you make as part of a course?

Why shouldn't someone pursue these? Having these certificates would never count against someone. Perhaps there are "bad certs" out there that don't require real learning, but CS50 isn't one of those. How is this bottom-feeding? I feel like you are discouraging an early learner from celebrating a real achievement, and participating in needless gatekeeping.

 

I don't mean to waste either my time or your time in this discussion. I wouldn't be replying but I think you have misunderstood me and I think it'd be better if I could just clarify a bit. I personally feel like beginners get too excited at small achievements, that's good and all but it makes way for people to undermine all the work it takes for a developer to become experienced. Being humble during the whole process is the best you can do to yourself and other developers. And I honestly don't mean to be rude even though I feel very strongly against new developers getting excited too early, raising their expectations a little too much just to be disappointed later.
Even I was in a similar situation in middle school, I used to code small stuff and get excited but then again, it wasn't a very good thing, getting involved in courses gives many people a false sense of achievement leading to the delusion of grandeur at some point if not corrected early hence my understanding is to just keep up with the grind, not get too over your head and know for a fact that unless you're doing something really meaningful, it's nothing to be too happy about. I'm in my final year of high school and even though I've had quite some experience with coding in general and various projects, I still don't consider myself to be great but then new developers barge in all over the place and simply upsets.
Also, as I said these are just my opinions, they aren't right or wrong, just subject to your point of view.

Thanks for indicating your age, it helps me understand where you're coming from.

I ask you sincerely, please never, ever do this again. Life is very hard. You must let people take joy in whatever they can create and learn. No one will ever be harmed because someone is happy they created something, no matter how small - unless someone like you comes along to take their joy away. That joy is essential to life. For some people, it is all they have to keep them going.

When you do this, you don't inspire people to create greater things. You train them not to reach out and share, not to ask for help or encouragement. If you want to be a force for good in the world - and it sounds like you do, or at least care enough to have strong principles - share in the joy of achievement, or simply keep quiet.

I presume you are also very hard on yourself. Kindness starts there - allow yourself to feel good about your achievements. Once you can do that, being kinder to others will follow.

I hope you can be kind to yourself and others in the future. There are many things in life that are worth fighting against. The original post is not one of them.

 

I recently thought of working on an online book reading app, something like bookhub and it's nice to see that is feasible.

 

Of course, it's possible.
Feel free to reach out to me in case you need any help. :)